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GOP Debate Reviewed; Interview with Mike Pompeo; LAPD to Address Knife Found at Former OJ Simpson Residence. Aired 11:10a-Noon ET

Aired March 4, 2016 - 11:30   ET


[11:30:00] KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Here's one example.

TED CRUZ (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know, Marco's dad started as a bartender. My dad started washing dishes. And yet, you know how many Americans wanted those jobs, roughly 300 applied, Donald hired 17. Donald's record right now as he standing here ...


CRUZ: ... his record right now is one of repeatedly hiring illegal aliens abusing American worker.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your time's up sir. Go ahead (inaudible).

MARCO RUBIO, (R) U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You argue that you hear the fight on behalf of the American worker, but when you have chances to help the American workers, you're making your clothes overseas and you're hiring your workers from overseas.


BOLDUAN: It's -- so some folks watching it almost seems like it was a coordinated attack amongst the two at Donald Trump. What's behind it?

VICTORIA COATES, SENIOR ADVISOR FOR FOREIGN POLICY FOR TED CRUZ: Well, I think right now the reality for the Cruz campaign is that we are the only campaign that really has a shot at winning this nomination outright and beating Donald Trump.

So Senator Cruz, his goal last night was to draw a very clear policy distinction with Mr. Trump. I mean he doesn't get into the make up, in the finger jokes so much as looking at actual distinct policy differences on the immigration issue in hiring American workers, which is what that clip was about. His goal is very much to as I said, to draw a contrast with Mr. Trump. So, I really think that was his goal as far as we're concerned, he hit it out of the park.

BOLDUAN: Victoria, on the immigration issue that is something that following the debate of the Donald Trump campaign, the issued statement saying that they were talking about one class of worker coming in and not the H-1B Visa worker. Do you think that's true? Do you think that it was a misunderstood the question?

COATES: I mean, I would let them speak for themselves on that. This is an issue Senator Cruz has been working very hard on since the day he got to the senate four years ago. And he was the one who led the fight against the Rubio-Schumer Gang-of-Eight bill. This is something our staff has extremely worked hard on with him under his direction. So it's a subject he knows very well and we're unlikely to have that kind of a problem.

BOLDUAN: That kind of a problem. What is the problem though?

COATES: Well, I mean, obviously there was some misunderstanding there. I don't know what it was. But, that as I said it's something we're unlikely to have because this is an issue that Senator Cruz knows a great deal about.

BOLDUAN: Victoria, despite in many different ways on stage describing or saying that Donald Trump is unfit to be president, all of the candidates on the stage last night including Ted Cruz pledged to support the eventual nominee even if that is Donald Trump. Do you believe that is something that could come back to haunt Ted Cruz?

COATES: Well, I'd actually take a little issue, Kate, with your use of the word unfit. I don't think that's a word that Senator Cruz has ever used and one of the things that it's been wonderful for me. I appreciate you mentioning the book, I mean historian of democracy. We also had an election in Tehran and Iran over last weekend where you had council that picked all of the candidates.

We have a broad range of candidates this year. We're winnowing the field, but we've got people from different races, different faiths, and they're all absolutely entitled to run for president of the United States. And that's a wonderful thing.

So I don't think Senator Cruz is in the business of calling people unfit. He is in the business of promoting his candidacy and the kinds of policies he wants to get into, and particularly here in Detroit, I thought his answer on the city of Detroit, on the state of Michigan, on rebuilding our economic base so that we can be secure here at home and respected abroad really resonates. And so, I don't think that he's around to call people unfit. I think he's here to promote his own candidacy.

BOLDUAN: Calling Donald Trump unfit to be president is definitely something that Mitt Romney has started to say. He said very strongly yesterday, continued that conversation today and it seems very much like he is pushing towards a contested convention saying he wants to stop Trump from getting to that magic number and to do so that would be pushed everyone should support Marco Rubio winning Florida and everyone should support John Kasich winning in Ohio and so on and so forth.

Is that something -- is that -- has the Ted Cruz campaign that all have been in touch with Mitt Romney about this strategy he's putting forth?

COATES: I mean, Governor Romney is exercising his first amendment right as an American citizen to speak out on the political process. Senator Cruz said just a few minutes ago on air that you covered live, he's not interested in a brokered convention.

I think it is the same kind of an issue that we have had in Washington very much over the last three years since we've en there, which is deal after deal that is cut in a back room and the American people know that they're getting the raw end of it. And they've tried to elect the conservatives to take the House in 2010, to take the Senate in 2014, and we're still getting these bad deals.

So, I think Senator Cruz knows from the response his getting, from the response Mr. Trump is getting on -- around the country that this is not going to be received favorably by the people who were coming in voting in the primary process.

[11:35:05] So our goal is to prevent this from happening simply by getting 1,237 delegates in winning the nomination outright.

BOLDUAN: And that is simply the goal of all the candidates in this race when we heard Ted Cruz make a direct plea to Trump supporters this morning in speaking to the press in an effort to do just that.

Big votes tomorrow, Victoria Coates, we'll be watching with you. Thank you very much for joining me.

COATES: Great, thank you, Kate.

BOLDUAN: Thank you.

Any minute now, we should also point out at Marco Rubio. He will be holding his first rally since unleashing a new round of attacks against Donald Trump last night on the debate stage.

So can Marco Rubio build the momentum that he needs to take home a much-needed and maybe even a much required win in his home state of Florida? We're going to talk live next with the top Rubio supporter. We'll be right back.


[11:40:10] BOLDUAN: Marco Rubio, live right now in Berryton, Kansas, his first of three campaign events in that state today. We did heard from Donald Trump just a short time ago picking up right where he laid (ph) off in hitting Marco Rubio at every turn as they all very quickly turn their focus to the next round of crucial votes. Listen.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Do you know that in Florida they hate little Marco Rubio so much, because of the fact that he never votes. He never shows up to vote. So when you think, I mean actually if you use -- I'll use a word that he uses. He has conned the people of Florida into voting for him and I'll tell you what, they are angry, because he never shows.

He is the worst voting record in all of Florida. He has the worst voting record in the United States Senate and one of the worst voting records in the history of the United States Senate. I don't think he's going to do, too well. They are angry at him. He couldn't with elected dogcatcher.


BOLDUAN: There you have it. Joining me now to discuss the state of race, the key supporter of Marco Rubio, Congressman Mike Pompeo of Kansas in Kansas today.

Congressman, it's great to see. Thanks so much for coming in.

REP. MIKE POMPEO, (R-KS): Kate, it's great to be with you this morning.

BOLDUAN: Thank you so much. So Marco Rubio, he really rearranged his schedule last minute to spend this last day before Super Saturday as were calling it in the great state of Kansas. There's not really a lot of reliable polling on the state of play in that state. What are you hearing on the ground? How does it look for you guys?

POMPEO: All the evidence on the ground as things are going great here for the Rubio campaign. He's near to peak (ph) here this morning. He'll be here in Wichita, the district that I represent this afternoon, and then headed up by Kansas City over impart this evening and were expecting thousands of people would turn out this rallies and we've had lots of folks reach out to us to figure out how they're going to make sure they get to caucus tomorrow for Senator Rubio.

We think we're going to have a really good day here tomorrow in Kansas because the people of Kansas shares Senator Rubio's values and understand that keeping America's safe matters and that Senator Rubio is the only candidate prepared to be commander-in-chief on day one.

BOLDUAN: Can you turn them out that? That is the big question. We will see tomorrow.

Let's talk about the state of the race in general and really what happened last night. This was the most memorable moment. I will say very honestly, unfortunately of the debate, and a low moment in the campaign in general, when the issue of hands came up once again. Listen.


TRUMP: He's really not that much of a lightweight. And as far as - and I have to say this. I have to say this. He hit my hands. Nobody has ever hit my hands. I've never heard of this one. Look at those hands. Are they small hands? And he referred to my hands if they're small, something else must be small. I guarantee you there's no problem. I guarantee you.


BOLDUAN: You know Congressman, the only reason that Donald Trump is talking about his hands and whatever else is because Marco Rubio started this. Was this a mistake that -- did Marco Rubio go, too far on this and on that one? POMPEO: Well, Senator Rubio took it for a long time and this has been a hard-hitting campaign make no mistake about of expect it will be that way for the weeks ahead as well. With Senator Rubio though has really focused on is the difference was -- differences between he and Donald Trump on important policy issues that face our nation.

All right, Mr. Trump is still talking about the great things that have been done at Planned Parenthood. He says that he won't take sides between Israel and Palestine. Marco Rubio has never flirted (ph) with the individual mandate of ObamaCare.

Those are the policy distinction that I think tomorrow when we caucus here in Kansas, people will remember and I'm hopeful that those policy differences and Donald Trump's absolute inability to give any detail around anything that he suggests will come back to be in the voter's minds tomorrow morning if they are. I think Senator Rubio, have a great day here in Kansas.

BOLDUAN: But Congressman, so you are comfortable with this line of attack that Marco Rubio started with the hands and what that's suggests?

POMPEO: It's been a very difficult campaign. Senator Rubio has done his best to stay on policy and stay focused on that. And as you listened to him travel around Kansas today, I assure you those are the things his going to talk about.

The reasons that Senator Rubio is the right person to lead America forward and take us back and towards defeating Hillary Clinton, so we don't have the third term of Barack Obama starting in January of 2017.

BOLDUAN: Congressman, you obviously have endorsed Marco Rubio. Endorsements are already something that everyone watches very closely. Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican nominee, he's obviously making his opinions known about the state of the race, but he has not very notably endorsed anyone. Does Marco Rubio want Mitt Romney's endorsement?

POMPEO: Senator Rubio is looking for endorsements all across the Republican Party folks that will turn out and support him and make the case for why he is the right person to lead us forward. And so, I'm confident he'll accept the support from everyone who is a serious conservative, who believes in limited government and a strong national defense, those are the folks Senator Rubio wants around him and I'm confident tomorrow we're going to see a whole lot of that.

[11:45:14] BOLDUAN: Looking past Kansas, if we could. I know you don't want to. But, looking past of Kansas if we could to Marco Rubio's home State of Florida, is a win in Florida? Is Florida must win for Marco Rubio?

POMPEO: Oh, he's going to do great in Florida. I'm very confident. Remember, when Senator Rubio ran the first time in Florida, the establishment fought him. He had to bang his way through and defeat the establishment who had another candidate they preferred. And like me, he ran as a free market limited government conservative who understood that Washington was broken and the people of Florida supported him. The establishment did not. And I think ...

BOLDUAN: So, it is not win? So, it is not win?

POMPEO: It's absolutely very important that he wins there and wins all across this country. Now, I'm confident the next few weeks he's going to do that.

BOLDUAN: Congressman, it's great to see you. Thank you so much.

POMPEO: Thank you, Kate. Have a great day.

BOLDUAN: All Right, you too. We'll be covering that race tomorrow as the good folks of Kansas heading to caucus. We do have to get to some breaking news though in connection with O.J. Simpson.

The LAPD is having a press conference any minute now concerning a knife found at O. J. Simpson's former estate. We have much more details about this. It's coming in. We are watching this press conference and what this could mean. Much more after the break, stay with us.


[11:50: 24] BOLDUAN: All right, we are all following breaking news out of Los Angeles this morning. The police department there -- say it again in my ear, guys (ph).

OK, police there are saying that they are testing a knife recovered from O.J. Simpson's former property, his former estate. We're looking at the shot right here, because the LAPD is scheduled to hold a news conference really any minute now. So, we're going to keep a close eye on that. And while we keep a close eye on that, let me bring in CNN's Paul Vercammen.

Paul, you have covered the long history of O.J. Simpson when he was acquitted 20 years ago and his legal battles since then. What are you hearing right now about the knife and if and how at all this could be related to his history?

PAUL VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That is the two decade long question, because it was two decades ago, of course, we had the O.J. Simpson saga portrayed throughout the media and throughout the world.

The knife apparently, according to report, came from a now-retired LAPD officer. That we're waiting to confirm. In just a short time, we expect that Andrew Neiman, Captain Neiman of the LAPD will come out and talk about how they obtained this knife? Where it was? Was it always on the property? It's being tied to the O.J. Simpson's estate that that famous manor, if you will, that everybody saw on television when O.J. Simpson surrendered himself to the LAPD after the low-speed chase.

So, details are just trickling out. As of right now, we don't know the size of the knife or if there was any other evidence on the knife, that will all be analyzed and this is a highly anticipated news conference, to say the very least.

BOLDUAN: Now, real quick, Paul. Do we know when this knife was recovered? Yes, we're just learning about it now. We're going to be hearing from the LAPD. They're testing it. Do we know when this knife was actually recovered?

VERCAMMEN: No idea specifically. But, clearly it's been a recent development. And that is one of the many questions that will be put forth to Captain Neiman when he steps up in front of these microphones and, as I said, sounds like it's going to be more like 9:15 Local Time to 12:15 Eastern.

BOLDUAN: Paul, do I still have you?

VERCAMMEN: You have me.

BOLDUAN: OK, great. Thanks, Paul, sorry. What -- Go over again, what we are now expecting to learn from the LAPD? I know that obviously details are just circling in. Often there can be a lot of rumor, especially when it surrounds O.J. Simpson and the O.J. Simpson trial and what happened since then. Are we expecting confirmation or just -- this is what we -- or just an update?

VERCAMMEN: No, we're expecting to hopefully learn a whole lot more about this knife. What about the size of the knife? Or was there anything that might have been a trace of blood? Could they tell that this early? Where exactly was this knife apparently found? How long was it in the possession of this retired officer?

All of these huge questions that are hanging in the air like the ever- present fog today in a very gray day in Los Angeles. So, again, just waiting for Captain Neiman to come out, give us the details on everything pertaining to this knife and O.J. Simpson's former property.

O.J. Simpson, by the way is in Lovelock, Nevada, in state prison there. You may recall he, of course, was sent away for a very long time following that bungled raid for lack of a better term (ph), in a Las Vegas hotel room when he attempts to be get back a whole batch of his memorabilia. And many people had said that they almost felt like the jury had thrown the book at him in that case because they felt that he owed to pay for whatever sins or transgressions or that people believe murder here in Los Angeles.

So, it would be interesting to hear if he would ever say anything, O.J. himself about this knife if it's indeed, you know, found to be true that it was on his property. Who would have thought, you know, this is all a hoax, too? We have to be very mindful of that. This could -- just be something pretty concocted, so that will have to be determined as well.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely. A very healthy dose of skepticism, I think is due until we do hear from the LAPD. Paul Vercammen, is there for us. We're going to have much more. Thank you so much, Paul. We're going to have much more of this breaking news out of Los Angeles.

The LAPD set to have a press conference really, at any moment concerning as Paul was laying out there, a knife found at the property of -- a former property of O.J. Simpson. No word yet. It is not known when the knife was discovered or if there is any relation to the 1994 deaths of his ex-wife and her friend.

[11:55:12] A lot of mystery, of course, now surrounding this. We're going to be following this very closely. Stay with us. We'll be right back.


ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, HOST, "LEGAL VIEW": And hello, everyone, I'm Ashleigh Banfield. Welcome to "Legal View."

And I want to welcome our viewers in the United States and all around the world. We are going to begin with this breaking news.

A knife had been recovered from the estate that used to belong to football star, O.J. Simpson.

A spokesperson for the Los Angeles Police Department says, it is unclear when this particular knife was found or even if it is related to the 1994 infamous murders of Simpson's ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend, Ronald Goldman.

As you will clearly remember from the months and months of coverage, O.J. Simpson was acquitted. A famous acquittal in both of those murders that happened in 1995.

You can see the microphone is being set up at Ad Hoc News Conference is what we're expecting the LAPD to hold at any moment and we're going to bring you those microphones live just as soon as they step to the mike.

In the meantime, Paul Vercammen, who has worked to this story as long as any of us who have been in the media for the last two decades had. He joins me live in Los Angeles on the phone on route to this news conference.

This is the kind of headline, Paul Vercammen that has media veterans drop what they're doing and drop their jaw at the same moment. Get me up to speed on exactly what we do know about this unbelievable find.

VERCAMMEN: Well, I'm standing right in front of the Los Angeles Police Department and Captain Andrew Neiman is going to come out in about 15 minutes and try to clarify what is going on with this report that a knife unspecified.